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Future Trends in Technology for 2010

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As we roll into a New Year (and New Decade) I find it relevant to discuss the Future Trends in Technology for 2010.

 

Last year I wrote an article titled “Top 20 Social Media Sites of 2008… Where Do You Rank??” where I spouted a prediction for 2009…

 

… the prediction was this: Twitter.com would have a percentage increase and user base similar to Facebook.com by the end of 2009. As it turns out, my prediction was correct. So, my first blog post of the year will be solely based on predictions for 2010 related to technology.

 

Let’s begin:

 

 

#1 – Real-time vs. Batch

 

In years past it was effective and efficient to run data through batch processing because the information wasn’t needed immediately. However, in today’s fast paced world we are rapidly moving towards the need for real-time information. For example, Twitter. I’ve found that I can get real-time news from Twitter faster than I can get it from other sources like newspapers, articles and even online media like CNN.com. In fact, lately I’ve been using Twitter and Facebook for the sole purpose of getting real-time feedback and news updates.

 

Batch is the process of a business waiting until the end of the week (or month) to collect data from customer reports, billing, etc. This is “batch processing”. There is an obvious gap between when the information is generated and when the information is understood. In traditional business, batch processing is commonly used. 

 

To make this clear I’ll give you an example: In the music recording industry, artists will write, play and record music, produce it into format, design album artwork, prepare a marketing campaign and schedule a tour of concerts to promote the new album. All of this is generally done BEFORE the customer hears a single song. That is batch processing.

 

On the other hand, you have real-time processing. An example would be an artist writing and recording a song, putting it on their blog (and Twitter, Facebook, etc.) for the customer to listen to. At that time, the artist can then interact in real-time and get instant feedback from the listener as to weather the music is what they’re interested in or not. The artist can then structure the rest of the album around what the customers wants to hear and would be interested in purchasing. That is real-time processing. Another example would be the American Idol process of finding stars that people are interested in. The whole framework is based on real-time processing.

 

This example is a basic one, but I’m sure you get the idea. Real-time processing is the wave of the future for technology. If you can process information in real-time instead of waiting for a certain amount of data you will be leaps and bounds ahead of your competition.

 

 

#2 – Augmented Reality

 

This concept was found in 2009, but not widely used. However, I believe we will see more and more companies use augmented reality to attract customers in 2010.

 

Augmented reality(AR) is fueled by GPS, mapping data from sites like Google and MapQuest along with the speedy technology from today’s smartphones. AR is basically the overlaying of data on top of your current environment. In other words, imagine walking down the street looking for a place to eat. As you walk you notice a slew of restaurants ahead, so you pull out your smartphone and point it in the direction of the restaurants. At an instant you’re connected to customer reviews of the restaurants and what you can expect on their menu if you venture inside.

 

When using Layar, for instance, a picture from your smartphone’s video camera is overlaid with bubbles of information from Wikipedia, Yelp, Google Search and Twitter. This will empower customer’s and individuals to collect data in real-time about what interests them while they’re on the move. As cool as this is… I’m still a little leary to how it will become useful in years to come, but in 2010 I believe this will become mainstream.

 

 

#3 – Mobile Marketing

 

This is something I’ve been touting for the past year. With the recent debacle of Google purchasing AdMob, one of the world’s largest mobile advertising networks, I believe 2010 will be the breakthrough year for mobile marketing. With Apple’s iPhone gaining more and more ground in the mobile market and Google stepping up with their Android Operating System(OS) it will only be a matter of time (months) before mobile marketing is mainstream for big businesses. Along with that will come mobile payment processing.

 

Imagine you’re at the store about to purchase some items at the checkout. Instead of swiping your credit card to purchase the items you scan your smartphone and put it on your phone bill.

 

Sounds weird to us here in the U.S., but much of Asia has already embraced this technology. Businesses like PayPalX and Amazon are developing platforms to make this a reality. I can certainly understand the optimism and hesitation, but let’s take a look at the recent credit crunch and market meltdowns. Credit card companies and banks are getting beat up with the slow economy. Will it only be a matter of time before they start to look at alternatives to getting customer’s business? Will they look to merge with service providers to enhance their foothold in the mobile market? Only time will tell, but it is evident that this technology will become available in 2010 and beyond.

 

*****

 

Realistically, I could go on forever about my predictions for 2010 and the coming Decade, but I’ll leave it at this for now. As we come out of the Information Age and venture into the Attention Age it will be interesting to see how the market reacts to the ever increasing technology trends.

 

 

Ron Reed

 

P.S. – Leave a comment and let me know what you think 2010 will bring in relation to future trends in technology.